Harris will serve 3 years. He’ll be 87 by the time he’s out…
Harris will serve 3 years. He’ll be 87 by the time he’s out…
Guido bumped into a tired looking David Ruffley at the Spectator summer party last night. Given the circumstances (he has accepted a caution for assaulting his ex-girlfriend) it seemed polite to ask him how he was, “I’m cheerful,” was his surprising reply. Tension started to rise as the Tory MP then accused Guido of “inaccuracies” in our reporting, when pressed on what those inaccuracies were specifically he offered no specifics. He then went off in huff with the Sunday Times political editor. Ruffley later left Westminster’s Blue Boar bar with a leggy blonde around midnight…
Guido is reliably informed that Ruffley has gone into hack-schmoozing overdrive in the last two weeks, organising lunches with Lobby journalists, offering punchy and colourful off-the-record source quotes and briefing against fellow Tories. Indeed at last night’s bash he took journalists from several papers aside for one-on-one chats. Making himself useful to the papers is his cynically calculated way of making sure his own name stays out of them…
Surrey Herald & News are reporting that Asif Ayub, Tory councillor for Ashford East in Spelthorne, has been found guilty of five counts of assaulting his ex-girlfriend. Readers will remember Ayub as the Tory MP hopeful who described David Cameron as the “Messiah“ at party conference in 2012. What is it at the moment with Tories and violently assaulting their girlfriends?
Tories are turning on David Ruffley, with two senior local party figures in Suffolk speaking out to condemn him for assaulting his ex-girlfriend. Tim Passmore, who is the Conservative Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner, says “such behaviour is inexcusable” and suggests that justice has not been done:
“Those of us in a leadership role in society must do our level best at all times and try to set a good example to others in what we do and how we behave – that includes all politicians regardless of any party affiliation. In my opinion there cannot and must not be any hiding place for the perpetrators of such crimes.”
Meanwhile Tory Suffolk County Council cabinet member and domestic violence campaigner Jenny Antill has added her voice to the growing disquiet over Ruffley’s violent behaviour:
“I cannot condone any incident of domestic abuse, regardless of the identity of the perpetrator or his or her position in society or political persuasion.”
As local Tories begin to distance themselves from their MP, not a single person has publicly defended Ruffley, and he himself has stayed silent…
Guido has tried to warn the Tories, and the world, about David Ruffley’s anger management problems before, reporting on his “obnoxious” behaviour towards staff leading to bright-eyed hopefuls leaving his office in floods of tears. Let’s not forget the lawsuits and the rumours of throwing bins at staff.
And so it came pass, when it emerged over the weekend that Ruffley has accepted a police caution for domestic violence, admitting to assaulting his then girlfriend in March of this year. What is the world coming to when one Tory MP faces a lynch mob and condemnation from the Prime Minister and thousands of others for an ill-advised hypothetical joke tweet, but another Tory MP, who accepts a caution for assaulting a woman, faces no action from his party?
By day she goes about her unassuming office job as the mild-mannered Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Defence, but when her ‘Soubry-sense is tingling’ the glasses come off and she turns into a Woman of Steel. Customers at a Pret-a-Manger were left bewildered as to the identity of the ‘bloused-crusader’ who saved them from the latest violent menace striking fear into the streets of Westminster. The crime fighter extraordinaire, who goes only by the name of SuperSoubs, used her powers of ‘Super Stern Shouting’ and glaring to fight off an attack on two innocent sandwich shop workers. She told reporters from the Daily Planet:
“I always pop into this Pret to pick up a coffee in the morning. I know the barrista well and he’s a nice guy. I just shouted at the drunk guy, ‘stop it, stop it now’, and put myself between them. They often listen to women because they don’t expect it from you. If you’re a man you’re more than likely to get smacked.”
And with that she was up, up and away. Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s SuperSoubs…
Max leaves prison in his new chauffeur driven transport.
He says it’s eight, but we all know it’s really four…
A big day for high profile sentences. Constance Briscoe gets 16 months for lying to the cops investigating Huhne. Clifford up next…
A Channel 4 News investigation finds that one in three people working in the sleazy booze-fuelled world of Westminster have experienced some form of sexual harassment at the hands of pervy MPs. One in five had witnessed some other poor young staffer being sexually harassed and over half said they had first or second-hand experience of hands-on politicians. Today’s Mail and Independent splash on the story.
The Tories have responded by ordering their MPs to sign a new code of conduct and implementing a grievance procedure for staff:
The code of conduct acts as a basic statement of what should be best practice in the workplace for Conservative Members and their staff. It explains the rights and responsibilities which are expected of both the employer and the employee.
The grievance procedure is available for staff to use if a grievance arises with their MP as employer. It protects both parties involved, brings with it consistency and fairness, and in doing so upholds the reputation of the Party and of Parliament. It is based upon a three stage process of mediation, grievance hearing and appeal. The process conforms to relevant employment law, ACAS guidance and HR best practice and is added as a schedule to the contract of employment.
They should get everyone at Number 10 to sign it too…
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New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:
“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”
Christie Malry @fcablog
Ed Miliband does photo oops, not photo ops